Thursday, April 29, 2010

It's almost May

Hello to you from the end of April, looking ahead to May, my very favorite time of the year.

As I write, it is a beautiful day, a bit crisp, but full of promise. At my house, lilacs are in bloom, tulips are hanging on, dogwoods hover, and my bees are eagerly anticipating the Tulip Poplar bloom, due in a couple of weeks. This year, I hope, I’ll have “Stoney Knob Gold” – honey from my bees. Nothing will taste sweeter.

I’ve been traveling a bunch lately. I’ve recently completed trips to Newark, Las Vegas, Indianapolis and Providence. Tomorrow I go to Baton Rouge and, looking ahead I have trips to Des Moines, northern New Jersey, Pasadena and Tuscany on my list. Zounds! Each trip makes my time at home more precious.

These trips have a variety of reasons: helping spread the word about early detection of ovarian cancer; helping shape my professional woman chefs organization; speaking about bike rides; GOING on bike rides; celebrating my sister’s birthday; celebrating MY birthday; spreading the word about bees and honey. It’s a fun combination and keeps me on my toes, invigorated, and, for the most part, out of trouble.

With each trip I come home, sink into the familiarity of my deck and yard, my plants, the birds, my bees, my dog, my bed. Sometimes I do not want to leave. Actually, most times I do not want to leave. I love home. Love the smell and feel of the air. Especially now, with blooming lilac sweetening the evenings, leaving is difficult. My gardens are a mish mash of things, chaotic, rambling, unkempt in a vaguely orderly way. I tuck things in, making room where I can. Colors pile up, brighten corners, feed my bees.

The bees are coming along well. By next month I’ll have a third hive. Already their energy is palpable. They share a drinking fountain with Tye, the pup. Though there is water for them in three or four places around my yard, they choose the dish right by my front door for their most frequent visits. That spot is my favorite too and so, on a warm afternoon we all, the pup, the bees, and I, sit and nibble on lunch or sit in the sun or sip water. We get along very well and I miss them, all of them, when I go away.

Last week The Obamas visited Asheville. I was in Rhode Island but was giddy with the thrill of this special visit. And when I spoke about my home with my fellow chef/board members, and told them about what they would see on their visit this summer, I felt giddy again. I get to live in this place that is so special. I get to go home right here. I don’t need to travel to get any thrill. I’m happy to go other places but, as I continue to find, with greater and greater depth, everything I need is right here. Oh happy day. Oh happy home. Oh happy life.